Monday, November 29, 2010

No Drama Mama -

Every once in a while you meet someone who you feel like you have known forever - 
it kinda felt that way when I met Wendy. 
I was greeted by a big, huge hug from her, before even a hello.

4 kids, two dogs, soccer practice, dance class, and a new house under construction. 
If that's not enough for you, she personally launched a fun social group, 
the "No Drama Mama's, in which Mom's get together to hang. 

Side note: and I bitch I can't get the laundry done...just sayin'.

They odd moments.
They literally would just drop some lyrics when ever the mood struck them.

They danced. 
They tried to re-create the Doors album cover.
They laughed. 

Hugged while rolling eyes 
and leaped in the air when Dad came out waving the nerf gun at them. 
Unpredictable...and animated.  
Fun loving and real.

It is hard to believe so much personality lives under one roof.

When I asked her how she manages to keep it all together and even do the cooking?
She replied very simply,
'we're Greek'...
 as if that should answer all of my questions.

I did have one more that I forgot to ask about...the Windex! 
(10 points if you know the movie; )

A "suck the life out of you",
 cause you're so darn lovable hug,
 and a head thrown back in a fit of giggles...

see what I mean...animated.

this is about as far as I got for a group shot...

Super charming, goofy, just want to hang with, kinda guy...
This guy laughed...the entire time. 
He was amused very easily...
 but then who wouldn't be by this family?

The birthday boy. 
I can honestly tell you that he wanted nothing to do with me,
  for I was the one thing standing in between him and playing with his new remote control Tonka truck.
I sooo get it "G"
 I wanted nothing more then to play with it myself!

Little Miss. Hot Stuff,
was so adorable and had the most outrageous expressions ever!
So we get her changed, drag the chair out, sit her on it - and take one picture. 
I lean in to move her hair and look away for one second to watch one of the boys go down from a massive tackle and 'poof' she was gone. 
I was over the moon with the whole outfit - so wish we had more time to play...

the peanut gallery...

First of all - thanks "G" for sharing a part of your big day with me! 
I know it wasn't easy, but you were a trooper. 
Can't thank each of you enough for giving me a peek into your life.
For being 'real' with me. 
For letting me see each of you for how you really are.
For entertaining and amusing me - which doesn't happen too often. 
It was refreshing to hear your witty banter and enthusiastic approach to life.

Readers, you all know the drill - help this family reach 20 comments to receive a complimentary gift!

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Cozine Family - Cherubs...

When I had asked her to describe her children, she was quick to mention that her husband has a knack for finding the perfect words. He was, after all the english major. 
I liked how she was aware of what attributes each person in the family brought to the table. 
She took her time and was thoughtful of each and every characteristic that made them all so unique. 
She rattled off details as if she were describing characters in a book. 
She used descriptive words, and didn't even feel the need to sugar coat things one bit. 

I have to tell you that this is one of my most favorite parts of the session. 
Before I even lift my camera, I find it so vital to be aware of the dispositions of people Im photographing. 
It not only helps to know their likes and dislikes - but it also helps to tell the story. 
Those little things, are the threads that weave it together.

I wouldn't be able to tell your story, if I walked in and randomly started to snap away. 
Nor would I be able to edit through the pictures if I didn't know what type of expressions fit the child. 
Those clues, those hints, are gems to me.
I want your history, their personalities and expressions to be savored. 


Thank you Christine for being so thorough. 
I knew who each child was just by their demeanor when we were introduced. 
You did a fantastic job of being so spot on. 

With four kids, you would expect, well, chaos at the session. 
But no. 
They were polite,well mannered and super sweet.
Mom, said it best when she called them her 'cherubs', and I couldn't agree more.

So without further ado, Cozine family, here is your story, your moments, your life.

This first shot to me looks like a cozy country Christmas. 
I love the rustic look, yet fancy feel with the dresses. 

The only boy among three sister's. 
Now, any boy that goes through life surrounded by all girls - 
is going to make his future bride one day a very lucky lady. 

Ms. M is a twin to her big bro above. 
Buuut the kicker...they were born on different days!
How incredibly cool is that?

The most soulful and deepest color chocolate brown eyes I have ever seen... little blue eyed fire cracker! : )

I think this next shot captures the essence of Ms. Em.

I looove kids holding hands...

I'm pretty sure that all four children are smiling here because Dad was super great with doing whatever it took to get genuine smiles out of the kids.

The whole fabulous fam...
Who would have thought we would have all of the wonderful autumn foliage so late in the season?
Loved it!

A special thank you to Jerry and Christine for allowing me the opportunity to have some freedom with the kiddos and to 'play' at our own pace
It was wonderful to spend the afternoon with you and your 'cherubs'.
What 'heavenly' company it was! ; )

So readers, please help the Cozine family receive a complimentary gift if they reach 20 comments. 
Leave your message right below! Jerry and Christine your comments count too ; ) 

O, M, P, E - I sent Santa your message! 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Winter Kids - "Winter" Wonderland

I guess I should have known. 
I mean, their last name was "Winter" for crying out loud.
So I shouldn't have been surprised that they brought it with them. : )
But I was.

It read 49 degrees, but with the wind chill, it was a cool 34. 
We didn't know it at the time, so we pressed on with the chattering teeth, ice cube hands and watering eyes. 
In between shots they were wrapped in blankets, but there was no getting around it. 
It was freakin' cold.

As cold as it was, they hardly complained though. 
They hugged and kissed spontenously, and were compassionate towards each other. 
Something that you rarely see these days.

The first time I talked to Kristin was last May to book the appointment. 
After only five minutes of chatting, I felt like I knew her my whole life. 
She has the amazing ability (gift) of making people feel comfortable. 

What I was happy to see was that I'm not the only one who thought that. 
During our session, we were stopped by clients of her's, who greeted her warmly 
(as if she were family) - and raved that she is the best in her field. 
Like I said...she makes an impression on you from 'hello'. 

And you know what they say, 'the apple doesn't fall to far from the tree'.
These little dumplings were as sweet as, umm 'apple' pie!
I think they have their Mom to thank for that!

The most adorable Christmas outfit ever... 

Super, super, kids...

If she wasn't giggling the entire time, she was sticking her tongue out trying to be funny.
So happy, for sooo cold...

Big brother.
He was the most protective, and sweetest young man I have ever met.

Just a little over a year and so independent already...

Naughty or nice?!
Or just a regular little comedian?

I like this picture because it just captures for me their sweet, sweet dispositions...

First and foremost, a quick shout out to the Ceislak family for referring the Winter family to me.
 I'm in awe every time I hear that I was referred by 'word of mouth'. 
I'm so grateful to each and every one of you that have done this for me. 
Thank you so very much.

Thank you Winter family for being so incredibly wonderful and kind.

I have to tell you - when I got in my car after all was said and done,
 I finally realized just how cold it really was. 

You know that bone chilling, can't get warm while the heat is set on high blasting in your face feeling? 
Yeah, that cold... 
 and yet when I thought about the unique bond between you all - 
I came away suddenly with nothing but 'warm' memories. 

Leave a comment and help them reach 20 to receive a gift!

Monday, November 8, 2010

The Wilson Family - Enchanted

"Do princesses live in this forest?" 
It came before hello.

'Well of coarse', I replied. 
Mom looked over her shoulder...'I told her we were visiting an enchanted forest today.'

it's quite possibly one of my favorite things in the world, and they had it. 

I think Einstein said it best, when he said, 
"Imagination is everything. It is the preview to life's coming attractions."

And so began our adventure within the winding paths of Mill Pond that were sprinkled with the richness of autumn leaves, beautiful bridges, picturesque landscape...and one crazy lady... 

Mr. and Mrs. Wilson's little man...

Introducing the adorable Ms. "V"...

Some candid snuggles...

and tender moments...

The scenery behind the kids in the next set of pictures was beautiful. 
It was the type of imagery that you wanted to jump right into. 

This was what was behind the children in the shot above. 
We were sitting on a bridge over looking it.

Mom + Dad

If this isn't what childhood is all about, I'm not sure what is...

I'm feelin' a little J. Crew in this next one...

Gymboree - cream, textured, yummy, sweater dress?! 
Yes, please!

So in an enchanted forest, there are all types of fun character's. 
Enter: Crazy Lady (and nooo it wasn't  me)

A rough, loud voice yelled out 'what's his name'?
We all turned and were greeted by the looks of a homeless woman. 

I'm not going to sugar coat it..we were all a little nervous by her abrupt behavior. 
I'm not even sure if we answered her or she just waited around to hear.

But all of a sudden this woman became the court jester, 
trying to get the serious boy to smile.
It worked, but not just with him, with all of us!

Below is my 'just for me shot', and I guess for a few of my loyal readers that mentioned 
you missed it in the last few posts...
(thank you for those little notes btw to let me know it's something you like : )
The 'out of the box shot'.

My mantra:
"Whatever you think about you bring about..." 
so imagine little 'V's surprise when we were coming around the last turn heading out of the forest 
and came face to face with a beautiful princess (bride) at the end of our trail. 

Dreams do come true for those of us who believe...

Much thanks to the Wilson family for being fun, happy, playful and having a fabulous imagination. 
It made my day!

Ohh, and crazy lady - if you should ever come across this blog, thank you. 
Thank you for being just who you are. 
I was embarrassed that I thought of you as 'crazy' at first and not just a 'nice and friendly' lady.

Please don't take offense to the word 'crazy' either.
 I actually like it. 
And after all, don't we all have a little crazy in us? 
Funny though,  none of us are as brave as you to ever show it. 

You stopped, you helped, and you gave us all a chuckle.
I'm so grateful for you for taking a moment to be a part of our adventure.
Hey, and if you're interested, I have a position open for an assistant!

Help the "W" family receive a complimentary gift when they get 20 comments below
(oh, and "W" family, your comments count too ; )

Saturday, November 6, 2010

The "C" Family - Lifestyle Session - The Paradox

The morning air was cool and crisp and the smell of wood burning in the bellies of stoves permeating the air. Fog and mist hung heavy near the ground, as I drove to their home early Wed. morning for our session. 

Autumn was indeed in full swing. 

When I walked into the Connolly home I was greeted by three beautiful, blond haired, blue eyed children. 
Their ages?
1, 2 and 3. heard me right. 

As I said hello, they smiled up at me and I thought to myself --smiles without coaxing...awesome! 
Then within seconds, they took off in different directions. 
They were on the 'go' from that moment on.

Mom, was laid back, calm, playful and real. 
I liked her immediately. 

We bonded over having kids so close in age and talked about when people approach her and say 
'don't you have heat at home', when she is out with all of the kids. 

She said it took her a while to 'get' it (the comment) and when she told me it, it took me a minute as well. 
(Just wondering how quick you folks are? : )

After the session while going through the images, I was struck by the ones I was drawn to. 
I was leaning toward all of the 'out-takes' or what I call the 'in between' moments. 
The imperfect moments looked...well, perfect to me.  

I know nothing is ever perfect, but sometimes I think we can find that 'perfect' in the most ordinary of moments. 

If we really 'see' them for what they are, I'm sure you will agree with me, they are quite extrodinary. 

Maybe we don't even need to look that hard for them. 
Maybe that perfection is in the things we observe on a normal basis. 
That 'in between', that really makes up life and what we'll long to remember. 

Milestones, perfect outfits and poses all help to document life. 
But that 'real' life as it's happening? 
To me that's magical. 

It may not be the perfect picture. The perfect expression or the perfect pose. 
But when you see it, you'll feel it

You'll recall the laughter and possibly hear it yet again. 
Smell the fresh cut grass or autumn leaves, and see the happiness in everyones eyes or in their movements and re-live it once again. 

It's all passing us by. 
That 'real' stuff. 

The 'ordinary' that we all think we'll remember or may not think it is important to remember. 

I don't know about you, but I want to know what kind of personalities my children had when I look back at my pictures years from now. I want to see those silly expressions, their pouts in all of their glory, and the way they interacted with one another, with nature, with life, and most important, with me.  
Hope you don't mind that I'm changing it up a bit tonight.
 I was just touched by the 'lifestyle' mood these images provoked. 
It captured real life as it was happening...
I'm so thankful for being able to 'see' these little moments for all that they are.

Who doesn't love an impromptu hug?

Nothing like having a large pile of leaves to jump in... 

or play in...
Doesn't Brody have the most perfect profile?

This next image is one of my faves. 
Mom threw caution to the wind and jumped right in the pile of leaves with her dumplings. 
She was in the moment...not just watching it pass her by.  

As some of you know, I love head shots. So, I just had to throw a few in.
I know sometimes we get caught up with getting the smiles, but I think the serious expressions are just as cute.  
Meet Ms. Emily.
What a face, huh?

All three of these kids remind me of that song by the Carpenters, 'Close to you'.
"On the day that you were born, the angels got together and decided to create a dream come true. 
So they sprinkled moon dust in your hair of gold, an starlight in your eyes of blue..." 

Okay Mom, I know you didn't want to be in any pictures...but I couldn't resist snapping a shared private moment between you and Em.

For some reason I just love all of their little personalities shining in this next one. 
We took a quick break to hand out some snacks and this was caught when Emily was trying to steal some goods from Lilly.
. Their expressions are adorable! 

Thanks 'C' family for allowing me to capture your moments, and all of the ones 'in between'
I had a terrific 'play date' with you all!

So readers, by now you should all know what to do! 
Leave a comment below to help this family receive a complimentary gift once they reach 20.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Pumpkin Pickin' 2010

We were not even in the car for ten minutes when baby number three starts to scream his head off. 
Baby number two has taken off her socks and her shoes and is asking for her bottle. 
Over. And OVER again. 
Child number one, well I'm sure you can guess, has to go to the bathroom.
Did I tell you we just left the house?

I pat Dan's leg and say, 'isn't this fun'?

The pumpkin patch was over an hour away. 
It was turning to dusk and all we keep hearing was 'I have to go to the bathroom reeeeally bad' switched up every so often with 'Daddy, are we there yet?' 

Trying to find the humor in the whole situation when after the tenth time of my daughter asking, 
Dan retorts with 'Hey, we are going to try something new this year...pumpkin picking in the dark.' 
I laughed. 
She cried. 

The entire car is now screaming in unison. 
Could the moment be any more perfect?

Giving in - 
I saw a tiny stand on the side of the road and told him we are just going to go here. It was a farm stand practically and although disappointed I needed to save our sanity for the long ride home.

The kids were wearing cute matching sweaters and I wanted just ONE picture of all of them. 
Yes, I was indeed asking for the moon.

I threw them all into the wagon so they couldnt move and said look here. 
Hey, over here. 
My daughter is making faces because she has to pee, my 1.5 yr. old is climbing out and my son wants to know what the deal is with the pumpkins on his lap. 

My husband was like, 'did you get any good ones, let me see, let me see'. 
It had been a whole ummm ten seconds and I was wrangling the kids in the entire time. 

I stare him down and he shrugged his shoulders with, 'well you're the photographer'. 

Yes darling, but not a miracle worker!!! 

So I took about ten minutes of pictures and knew that it just wasn't going to happen. 
So I put down the camera and enjoyed the moment for what it was...all mine.

I told you she had to pee...

The only reason why she is attempting to make eye contact, was because I tripped over a pumpkin and it began to roll down the hill.
 I think she was secretly wishing it was me and my silly camera.
The kid actually looks amused!

I have no idea where child number two is at this point. 
Thank goodness for the husband!

Thank goodness he's cute. 

This is the closest I got to getting almost everyone in the shot.
Do you think I can send this out as my Christmas card this year?  ; ) 

The moral of the story?
It is almost damn near impossible to take pictures of your own kids. 
(Well without some valium or a nice glass of wine ; ) 

Hey, if any photographer's are reading this in my area, can I schedule a session with you?
I have a ton to offer...three screaming kids and two crazy parents to photograph? 
Sounds like a disaster great idea, right? : )

Monday, November 1, 2010

Jessica's Sweet 16 - Sunset Harbor

I almost forgot what it was like. 

I heard the girls before I saw them. The excited, happy anticipation of their chatter. 
They walked in a huddle, as if they were kinda in a walking hug. 
The half laughed and half talked with every sentence, and I think the phrase of the night was 
'Ohhh Yeahhh'...but kind of in a funny-ish accent.

The excitement was tangible.  
The preperation, the details, the endless hours spent searching for the right dress was about to finally pay off. 

It was Halloween night and Jessica was about to celebrate her sweet 16 in style.
Lavish white feathers sprung up from elegant tall vases, and "up" lights were placed in a dramatic fashion around the edge of the room in her choice of color that night of red. 

Pumpkins fill the tables, the DJ's were in costume, and the candy apples were perched ready to give to the trick or treaters that tonight were called 'guests'.

When I got home last night, I tiptoed into my own daughters room to tuck her in. 
She opened her sleepy eyes and asked me how work was (which was pretty cute coming from a five year old). I told her it was quite wonderful, because tonight I worked with a beeeeeautiful princess. 

She sat up with a startled look on her face. 
"You're joking me Mama", she said. 
So I told her all about the magical night, and what was a story, a mere fairytale to my daughter, 
was a day in the life of one lucky girl...Jessica. 

I showed her some of the pictures from the evening and her eyes flew open wide. 
She stared in disbelief at each image and ooohh'd and ahhh'd over each and every detail.  
Then as I turned out the lights and wished her sweet dreams, she whispered, 
"can I please be Princess Jessica next Halloween?"

Without further ado, please meet the divine Ms. Jessica...

Now, this next shot might not be for everybody. 
It's hazy and has the sun flare going on in it. 
But I would be re-miss not to include one of them since it seems to be my 'thing' lately. 
I think it has a magical appeal to it. 
Kind of fairytale-ish...
Your thoughts?

Red is the new black?! 
Well, as far as shoes.
It seems to be the case at the last few events I attended.

Some detail shots...

Dad contributed a work of art to hold the 16 candles...
and to the left is the gorgeous sweet fluff of one of the centerpieces.

It's all in the details....

So I'm thinking, I soooo wanta be Princess Jessica next Halloween too... ; )


Jessica, I loved your demeanor, your calm and totally fab glamorous side. 
There is certainly more to being a princess then just a pretty ball gown, and you my darling had 'it'.

Thank you for choosing me to be a part of your happy day, especially if only to remind me that life is meant to be celebrated. Each day, a precious gift. 
Celebrate it small, celebrate it big.
 Or hell just celebrate, for the heck of it.

A special thanks to the Pitocco family who referred me for this party. 
As always, your referrals are the biggest form of a compliment. 
Thank you, thank you, thank you for keeping me in mind!

So folks, if you want to help Jess get a complimentary gift from Show and Tell, please take a quick moment to leave a comment right below. If she get's 20's her's!

Have a peek at the slideshow below!